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Thread: I Think It Is Time

  1. #1
    falcon21's Avatar
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    Goggles I Think It Is Time

    Right now will probably be the best/easiest time in my life to pursue a private pilot's license. I would like to do everything possible before I step into an airplane. I am considering getting the Gleim Private Pilot Kit, I have a copy of their Pilot's Handbook but it is a little outdated. Any suggestions or comments on Gleim or other courses? For the flight lessons I am looking at training in a Piper Cub, the old fashion way. Is it reasonable to think that I could get my PPL within a five month period? My work schedule is flexible and probably the biggest limiting factor would be the weather. Any comments/suggestions/stories feel free to share them!

  2. #2

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    Yes, on both counts. I don't think you will ever regret learning in the Cub, and starting in the back seat rather than in the front like a Super Cub or Champ or Citabria will make you comfortable with flying tailwheel airplanes even if you can't see out the front. The Cub was what a million folks who became good pilots learned in back in the old days.
    That is what I did, not as a private pilot , but when I wanted to up my skills to fly other planes.
    Not just yes, but Heck Yes!.

    Your Gleim book may be somewhat dated, but 90% of learning has not changed. There is Class B, (TCA s) and a few things, but much of the fancy GPS etc. stuff is optional and is not required for basic flying.

    Any of the major brands of ground school do a decent job of teaching. If you can get a computer interactive course, it will be even faster and well worth the few $hundred cost over just a book.

    You can easily do it in 5 months IF you go for it, and don't waste time. You might be a pilot by Airventure time. Lets say you need 40 hours of flight time, well 5 months is 150 days so that is only an hour each 3 1/2 days, 2hours per week and Wis weather should be getting better now.

    And don't let someone tell you that you need 60 or 70 hours to be a private pilot.I think it took me 43 hours, and that was at a tower airport, MYF, under a TCA, and without computer aids like there are now.
    Go for it like a cop in a donut shop.
    And start tomorrow.

    Good luck
    Last edited by Bill Greenwood; 04-07-2013 at 08:13 PM.

  3. #3
    rosiejerryrosie's Avatar
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    If you can fly two or three time a week, there is no reason you can't do it within a five month period. What are you waiting for? Time's a wasting!!
    Cheers,
    Jerry

    NC22375
    65LA out of 07N Pennsylvania

  4. #4
    gbrasch's Avatar
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    My son is in the middle of taking the "Complete" Private Pilot Course from Sporty's. I have looked it over and it looks pretty good, even though I have to admit that surprised me.
    Glenn Brasch
    Tucson, Arizona
    1952 Piper Tri-Pacer
    RV-9A flying after 10 years, 10 months and 22 days.
    Medevac helicopter pilot (Ret)
    EAA member since 1980
    Owner, www.RVairspace.com

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by falcon21 View Post
    For the flight lessons I am looking at training in a Piper Cub, the old fashion way. Is it reasonable to think that I could get my PPL within a five month period?
    it's not reasonable in a genuine Piper Cub. The PP regs require instrument training and the practical test standards require you to demonstrate maneuvering by reference to instruments. That plus radio naviation, plus a communications radio for the requisite training at an airport with a control tower. So unless you have a decked out Cub with electrics, radios and full gyro panel, you'll need a second airplane for some of those tasks, which will increase training times and costs.

    As for the knowledge part, it might be a good idea to call local flight schools or ask local flight instructors if they know of anyone that offers a ground school course. Usually you can do this over a few week period and take the test at the end. That part will be done.

    Five months is a realistic time frame, just make sure your instructors are on the same page.
    Last edited by martymayes; 04-07-2013 at 08:57 AM.

  6. #6

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    Marty, he can certainly do most of his training in a J3 Cub. He can do the important part of learning to fly, not just talk on the radio or play with gadgets like too many students now do in modern planes like Da 40. He didn't say what airport he is at or if it had a tower, but even so our airport has a control tower and my Cub has a portable battery powered radio, that works fine with the external antenna.

    For real flying you will use the skills learned in the Cub on every flight, but unless you live and fly IMC most of the time you won't often use the IFR part of the training.And every flight even if on an IFR flight plan, begins and ends with a VFR takeoff and landing.
    Of course, any pilot who gets his rating in the Cub, can and should go on to other types of airplanes and other ratings, such as IFR.

    Yes, he will need to use another plane for the instrument part, but that is only few hours of the total time.

    And if he decides in the future to move up to many of the most fun type of planes, like Stearman, T-6, Pitts, etc., most of them are tailwheel types and he will already have not only a tailwheel endorsment , but good experience in flying a real vintage tailwheel plane.
    Last edited by Bill Greenwood; 04-07-2013 at 10:09 AM.

  7. #7
    FlyingRon's Avatar
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    I would not invest a lot in instructional materials until you have chosen a training outfit. If it's a 141 school you will likely be locked into purchasing what there curriculum follows.

    That being said, the Gleim is real nice package. It's what got me through my Instrument Rating. Their CS is top notch which is more than I can say about some of their competitors.

    A whole lot of people have learned in cubs. If you can find one that is available to you reliably, go for it. You'll be a better pilot than those that learn on planes with the training wheel. I impressed the hell out of a guy who gave me my BFR in a 152 a couple of weeks after I got my TW endorsement. Far too many recurrent students don't touch the rudders in the air or the ailerons on the ground.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Greenwood View Post
    Marty, he can certainly do most of his training in a J3 Cub.
    I agree. But he can't do ALL of the training or ALL of the practical test in a Cub. That requires a second airplane and now the issue has just become unnecessarily complicated.

    Nothing says you can't learn to fly a Cub after getting a PP certificate and it may provide incentive to continue flying after certifying as a PP, a point where a lot of people quit.

  9. #9
    JimRice85's Avatar
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    Having learned to fly in a Cub has served me well. Lots of tailwheel opportunities because of it.
    Jim Rice
    Wolf River Airport (54M)
    Collierville, TN
    1946 Globe GC-1B Swift N3368K
    1946 Piper J-3C Cub N7155H

  10. #10

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    If one is going to spend 40 hours and pay for it, perhaps $6k or so, then it ought to be FUN, and something a little extraordinary.

    And that is not a 152 or 172. Basic Cessnas do a great job of being safe and pretty easy and usually reasonably priced for a trainer, but they really are sort of lowest common denominator designs. They are for the below average skills student pilot to learn safely in and they do that well.
    But they are not going to overwhelm you with excitement.

    And after the Cessna experience, what does a pilot feel when he goes to fly a Stearman or T-6?
    Now it is , "Oh my God, I can't see out directly in front and down, this must be impossible."

    You can learn in virtually any type plane, simple and boring or even like my friend did in the Navy who started in an SNJ.
    The type of plane is not as important as the determination of the pilot., and the quality of the instructor.

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